There is another equally important and challenging cycle at play here – sensory processing disorder, anxiety, OCD, oppositional defiance, sleep, digestion and attention problems actually improve with better nutrition. So the instinct of parents trying to get food into their kids should be supported. We should not just accept that our kids will eat less than 10 things, toss in the towel and continue to increase pharmaceuticals to decrease challenging behaviours. Does this sound like your house? Nutrition is actually vital to mental health functioning of these kids…years of research backs it up. We now know – there can be no mental health without physical health.
So What Now?
How are you going to make changes in your child’s diet and food choices without creating more anxiety and possibly adding to your already busy and stressful special needs family life?
The answers to all of these questions are not easy, but fortunately they are also not impossible. Lots of children with Autism and sensory processing disorder have learned to eat new foods, but it doesn’t happen without a plan and work. Parents need help from professionals who understand nutrition, children, Autism, ADHD, anxiety, sensory processing disorder and family.